Monday, November 28, 2011

Fremantle Tweed Run 2011 - The ride

At 10.00am on Saturday November 26, 2011, about 300 cyclists gathered at the Leighton Beach picnic area in North Fremantle. All were suitably attired in old fashioned tweed and hounds tooth period clothing and were taking part in the annual "Fremantle Tweed Run".

Most of the bicycles ranged in age from 20 to 30 years old, some bicycles were newer, and some were older original vintage bicycles from 1950's. Some bikes were single speed (fixed and free), some were old three speeds, and others had ten or more gears.

The diversity of the bicycles was mirrored by the age of the participants.... some children as young as 10 rode in the event, while other riders were in their 60's.

Even with all of this diversity the participants had only one goal in cycle in a relaxed and enjoyable group through the streets of Fremantle.

After all of the riders were fitted out with numbered calico "Tweed Run" bibs, the participants were addresssed by the friendly event coordinators.

Event coordinators.

The numbered calico "Tweed Run" bibs.

Once clear instructions were delivered to the group, all of the cyclists headed off for a relaxed ride toward Fremantle - with the first meeting point being at the E shed markets on the Fremantle wharf. Departure times were staggered across smaller groups to avoid congestion on the narrow cycleways.

Near the E shed markets the replica of James Cook's ship "Endeavour" was tied to the wharf. The ship provided a fantastic backdrop for the riders and others to enjoy the gathering.

After a 20 minute break on the wharf near E-shed the group rode as one through the Fremantle townsite, eventually travelling along South Terrace and down Cantonment Street toward Clancy's Fish Pub. As the group rode through the streets of Fremantle on-lookers were impressed by the well dressed men, women, and children riding stylish older steel bicycles.

Once at Clancy's it was time for something to eat and drink, the cold beer (of couse) tasting exceptionally good!! Live music entertained the crowd who stayed to enjoy the relaxed atmosphere within the grassed outdoor area.

A great day was had by all and I'm certainly looking forward to taking part again in next years event.

Safe riding to all.....


Sunday, November 13, 2011

Fremantle Tweed Run 2011 - Promo

Good news for all those vintage minded cyclists looking to be participants in the 2011 Fremantle Tweed Run. The event this year is going to be bigger and better than ever!!

It will take place on Saturday November 26 and is to commence at Leighton Beach at 10.00am. The group will then cycle to the lawns near Clancy's Fish Pub, Cantonment Street, Fremantle, where there will be a cycling festival of food and entertainment arranged by the Dismantle Bike Group. 

Please keep an eye on these links for more details as the event date approaches. pimp your vintage ride and raid your local recycled clothing store to kit yourself out in gear suitable for such a prestigious event....tweed vests, bow ties, and period clothing only please.

Come and celebrate vintage cycling in a relaxed and enjoyable atmosphere with others who love to cycle.....

Safe riding until then.....


James @ Perth Vintage Cycles. 

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Limited Edition Pashley Guvnor release in 2011.

Due to the increased interest in "Tweed Run" and "Tweed Ride" cycling events in the US this year, Ralph Lauren Rugby (clothing) has introduced a collection of tweed clothing that they encourage to be worn during the Tweed events. As you would expect the clothing is well made, great looking, and come with a price to match.

Ralph Lauren Rugby 2011 Tweed Run collection.

The interesting part to all of this is that Ralph Lauren has commissioned Pashley cycles of England to design and produce 50 limited edition Pashley Guv'nor bicycles to mark the clothing release. I have just located an image of one of the new Guv'nors......and mighty fine they look.

What a great marketing angle, and what a lovely bicycle to add to your stable!

The framework of the limited edition Pashley Guvnor.

The technical notes are scarce, so far all we know is what’s in the image above: “front brake, two speed coaster hub rear, cream tires, black gold-lined rims, Brooks B17, etc.” ...and doesn't the gold banding on the seat tube look great! 

Here is the advertisement for the Limited Edition Guv'nor below, and with all of the excitement generated by the Tweed events across the US I can only imagine that getting your hands (and buttocks) onto one of these gems will be almost impossible.....although if given the chance I'd certainly snap one up for the advertised price of US$2 200.

Below is the advertisement for the Ralph Lauren Rugby sponsored Tweed Run New York City 2011, marketing at its best!

...and whilst we're on the subject of new Pashley products..... Please have a look at a new Pashley release captured at Eurobike this year. It's called the 'Sprinter' and re-intoduces the famous line of GB bicycle components.

The overall look.....although this image doesn't do it justice.

GB stem and handlebars.

Solid silver Pashley head badge.

The bike is rumoured to cost around 6 000 pounds, but with a chromed steel Reynolds frame, solid silver head tube badge, and a Camnpagnolo Super Record groupset, you can see why the price point is so high.

The above image is of the GB stem on the Pashley "Sprinter" which is simply.......beautiful, I'm sure you'll agree. Sit back and watch the frenzy if GB extend and release their range of traditional cycling components.  

Until next riding.


Tuesday, October 4, 2011

My 1965 Malvern Star 2 Star bicycle - Part 3

After finishing my 1965 Malvern Star 2 Star (Part 2) I rode it for a couple of weeks and soon discovered how unresponsive the back pedal rear coaster brake was.

In modern traffic conditions it's important to have the ability to pull up fairly quickly, but the Perry coaster hub with a rear pedal brake on this build was not reliable, even dangerous. Even a major effort pedalling backward did not provide much 'braking' assistance.

I live in a hilly area and I also found that the coaster hub created another problem. When starting on a hill I could not rotate the pedals backwards to put them in an ideal position to start not being happy with the setup I made some changes.

Firstly I hunted down a NOS vintage chromed 40 hole hub with freewheel threading. I was lucky enough to find this hub on eBay and paid very little for it. It is a Phillips brand hub, made in England in the 1950's, so when I got it I took it apart and had it regreased. After a polish it came up beautufully.

1950's NOS Phillips 40 hole rear hub.

My friend George laced the hub into the chromed Westwood rim and it looked great. After looking at gear ratios on the Sheldon Brown site and at I decided to fit a 19T freewheel to the hub. This gave me a neutral gear ratio (46T front, 19T rear) that provides for easy pedalling in most terrains.

The next issue to address was that of brakes. I managed to get hold of a set of chromed steel long reach calipers from George and, after giving them a polish, I fitted them to the bike. I also had the matching Dia Compe brake lever and once cabled in I used some stainless steel Dia Compe cable clips to run the brake cable along the top tube. 
Rear brake caliper.

Stainless steel Dia Compe cable clips.
Having ridden the bike for a a few weeks now with the current setup I am very happy. It pulls up to a stop very well and now that I have two brake levers on the drop bars it looks and feels more balanced. Happy days!!

Vintage NOS Dia Compe levers.

My 1965 Malvern Star 2 Star.

Please find related posts as below.

Part 1:

Part 2:

Until next time, safe riding.


Sunday, September 18, 2011

The Tweed Ride phenomenon

The enjoyment of cycling has spread across many different communities all over the world in various styles and types. Bicycle polo, bicycle moto cross, and the fixed gear culture are to name a few. 

More recently a new cycling phenomenon has emerged that takes cyclists back to an era between the 1920's and 1950's when life seemed romantically simple and without complication. In a rapidly changing world cyclists have developed these cycling events that enables them to briefly return to this period of time......the opportunity on a relaxed Sunday afternoon to experience the cycling joys of a bygone era with a group of like minded people.

These events are known as "Tweed Rides" or Tweed Runs".  

The riders that participate in Tweed rides are expected to ride vintage bicycles and dress in the style of traditional British cycling clothing from the period between, but not limited to, the 1920's to 1950's. The term "tweed" relating to a type of fabric commonly worn in Britain during the period.
Typical tweed fabric.

The first Tweed Run was held in London in January 2009 and was organised by the London Fixed Gear and Single Speed (LFGSS) internet community. Their website is located at and provides alot of interesting cycling information, forums, classifieds, and links.
The advertising poster for the first Tweed Run in 2009.

The first Tweed event in 2009 gained alot of public interest and media attention. The annual event has since grown in participation and following. Detailed information and images are found at the official London Tweed Run website

Since the first Tweed event similar events have popped up across the globe. The events are usually organised during autumn or spring when the weather will most likely be suitable. Below is a list of organised Tweed events from today forward in 2011. The list, although not exhaustive, indicates how popular the event has grown in recent times.

Kiel, Germany. Tweed Run - Sept 18
Birmingham, UK. Tweed Ride - Sept 24
Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA. Tweed Ride - Sept 24
Nottingham, UK. Cycle City Ride - Sept 25
Newcastle, NSW, Australia. Tweed Ride - Sept 25
Portland, Maine, USA. Tweed Ride - Oct 2
Cincinnati, Ohio, USA. Tweed Indeed Ride - Oct 2
Edmonton, Canada. Tweed Indeed Ride - Oct 2
Bellingham, Washington, USA. Tweed Ride - Oct 2
Missoula, Montana, USA. Tweed Ride - Oct 8
Stockholm, Sweden. Tweed Run - Oct 15
Toronto, Canada. Tweed Ride - Oct 15
New York City, USA. Tweed Run - Oct 15
Madrid, Spain. Tweed Ride - Oct 29
Manchester, UK. Tweed Ride - Oct 29
Pescara, Italy. Tweed Ride - Nov 20
***Whilst all care has been taken to provide accurate information in the above list, please don't assume the dates are confirmed. Please check local cycling event guides closer to event dates as times and dates often change without notice.

As a vintage bicycle owner I have been interested in the advertising posters associated with the events. They capture the spirit of the events, and often carry images of a bike I own....the Pashley Guv'nor, a timeless 1930's path racer. The Guv'nor is a vintage classic, lovingly reproduced with modern components.

Please enjoy a sample of the advertising posters for the events below. 

Tweed Ride Philadelphia 2009 (USA)

Tweed Ride Paris 2010 (France)
Tweed Ride Dallas 2009 (USA)

Tweed Run Fremantle 2010 (Australia)

Tweed Ride California 2010 (USA)
Tweed Run London 2010 (UK)
Tweed Ride Newcastle 2010 (Australia)
Tweed Run London 2011 (UK)

Tweed Run Florence 2011 (Italy)

Tweed Run Adelaide 2010 (Australia)

Tweed Run New York City 2011 (USA)
Tweed Ride Sydney 2010 (Australia)

The events attract a large variety of participants who ride a wide range of vintage or reproduced vintage styled bicycles. Here are some typical sights seen at tweed events...beautiful bikes and beautiful people re-creating the atmosphere of a bygone era.

 Until next time....ride safely.